Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Thanks for the interview practice 'world'

Wow! As a result of snowballing events relating to my Regent Cinema film school project, I gave an over-the-phone interview to TFM radio yesterday.
I'm sure it will be edited down quite a bit, I do try and cover every single detail but that's probably three times more time than I'm allowed.
So, if you don't make the final cut, here's a list of thanks:
Tony Shaw and students, Entertainment Design Crafts
Di Scott, Mike, Richard and students, creative film and moving image production
CCAD marketing dept
Rachel Meeks, publicist
Neil Bates, Regent Cinema
Laura Degnan, Writers Block
Mum and Dad, catering, quartermasters
Martin and Jen, right hand persons,

Thank you one and all!

Tune in to TFM, 96.6fm some time today - when I know, you'll know!

Friday, 21 January 2011

Live studio project happened!

I've only just realsied I'm finished with the live studio project, it's been with me for, well, since last year!?!

I thought I'd nailed it in early rehearsals but come the monent of truth, I forgot a line, that is, I missed my cue.

Fortunately I was working with The Greast James Harris who seamlessly covered my line and brought me right back into play. Our section played out well, including the H&S baiting 'throw knife into audience' part.

If we'd have been on time, the show would have ended with me shooting into the camera lens, alas, in the melee at the end, the judge wasnt fed his line, so I wasn't fed my line, so it just ended on the 'zombie-as-posh-bloke' payoff - still funny but just not quite right - 30 seconds can make all the difference some days, ey?

Same time next year?

Not a chance - there will be no more studio and no more live projects.

It's bittersweet to have taken part in the last of something and always a pleasure to work with the students of CCAD FdA TV and Film Production, and, of course, James 'Saved the day again' Harris - many thanks one and all.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Well I didn't see that one coming - TWICE!

I was acting again this week, not surprising since we're in the rehearsal stages for next weeks 'live studio' project, and I've known for some time that I'd need to record a cutaway ahead of the night. Well last Wednesday it happened, and I couldn't have been less ready...
I'd turned up for another rehearsal but was whisked away and asked to perform one little speech - just a part of the whole scene I've been working on.

I was rubbish again. I couldn't remember more than 2 lines in a row and having a script was no good as it was to be performed direct to camera!

I was a little demoralised by this, wondering if I'm nothing more than a show off, not an actor.

Thursday night I went to the Arc in Stockton to see an art installation by local artists Dave and Michelle Allinson.

As I arrived at the Arc however, I landed on a brand new class being held by Writers Block, preperations for an open sketch show for Easter...
Well, I took everyone to see the art first - it was fantastic and mesmerising: projector screens layered into cubes with dynamic water animations projected 'into' them whilst sounds of the ocean played quietly. Excellent, I could have stayed for hours there... Rehearsing my lines!

At the writers block event, following introductions and ice breaker exercises, we finished the night by creating short sketches in groups of four. It was exciting to work with strangers and have to trust them and yourselves based on very little prior knowledge; since we were largely improvising, should I play it safe or was it time to let Bad Johnny out of the bag and push the boundaries a little?

If you know me, you already know the answer and we all had a lot of fun! It wasn't recorded mind, so for those who weren't there, it's been lost in the night just like a mummy's tomb in the sand - maybe it will be revisited one day but for now it has gone.

And that was improv.

Acting from a scrip: I suck
Improv: you can't go wrong!

Food for thought.

It's my birthday tomorrow, I can't afford to many more false starts in life. Depending how the live project goes, I may decide to stay behind the camera for a couple of years, get good at that without the distractions of acting...

As always, watch this space.

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Another day, another interview, and a warning on over preparation...

Yesterday I recorded my 'favourite film' interview with mark Harrison for the community radio show he produces.
The subject was the 1991 film, Point Break, one I have surely seen over a hundred times in the two decades since it was first released.
The idea of the five-minute slot is to talk about your film choice, what it's about, why you like it and how it has impacted your life. I did all that and more - my usual too much more, to the point where I was spoiled for choice as to what to say and panicked that I could miss the core of my message.
I love preparation for projects; I love research and planning and I love it when it all comes together. The place where I fall down is the application: I like the spontaneity of a live performance, and yesterday, at first, I found myself merely reading from a script and it felt wooden. I had over-prepared and was so in love with the subject that I'd lost sight of the given timelines.
Mark was very professional in his interview technique and kept referring back to the SIX pages of notes I had taken with me, ultimately drawing the best from the person and the material before him, which I hope does justice to my long term love of this film.

My interview was just one contribution from the Writers Block team and should be broadcast around the end of the month as part of an ongoing feature.

Click the image or check out this link:!/photo.php?fbid=489026496482&set=o.186588868037263

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Celebrity interview

Today at work I was surprised to see some of my film and tv classmates wandering round my department with a full recording set up.
I hadn't read the whole email but I was aware that interviews were being filmed of staff and students of CCAD and I gladly stepped up to the mark.

I was rubbish!

My witty story involved a beard bleaching mishap and my vision of the future featured a slightly lived in looking workshop - and it took me THREE attempts to just introduce myself!
Point of interest: just 2 weeks till the live studio project. I've had a couple of meetings with the directors now and I know what I'm going to do - it's just a matter of doing it and given today's performance, I need a heck of a lot more practice!

Saturday, 1 January 2011

All The Best In 2011 and Beyond!

Biggest news of the year so far: I've shaved off my beard.

I had been growing it for a good few weeks with a view to acting in a mountain training montage - a homage to Rocky 4.
Well the dates failed to drop into place and the snow has mostly thawed so that's not going to happen this time around.

I am still working on my lines for Buck Turbine but I've had very little input from the director so I'm not sure where I should go with the dialect - with so many 'Bonds' to draw from, I could go as far wrong as the difference between Moore and Craig!

Happy new year one and all!